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A Point of View: The lifeblood of a community

WEST VALLEY — How fortunate we are, in Springville and the immediate surrounding areas! Individuals and families in Springville and other communities like ours, to the north, south, east and west, depend upon indispensable goods and services, supplied by local businesses.

There probably is not an individual among us, who does not depend daily upon the goods or services, supplied by our local business establishments. And many of the workers, owners and managers of these establishments know their customers by name; they care about their customers and their customers’ families. That is just the way it is, here in our community. That is the story across America.

Small businesses in America are the lifeblood of the economy of each of our communities. And yet, we are told that small businesses are going to be hit with another tax increase, this year. How can this be good for the economy?

There are more than 24 million small businesses in the U.S., and 2 million in New York state. Small businesses represent more than 99 percent of all employer firms, employ half of all private sector employees, pay 45 percent of total U.S. private payroll and have generated 60 – 80 percent of net new jobs annually, since the mid-1990s. In addition, small businesses have been a source of tremendous innovation and employ 41 percent of the high-tech workforce. Without the availability of our local small businesses, many of us would find it a difficult “road to hoe.”

In our community, there is a synergy between small businesses and with individual citizens and visitors who come to our area. Truly, that is the ebb and flow of the business cycle and the free enterprise system. As consumers, we realize that the job of operating a “small” busines is not a simple matter. Indeed, with vastly increasing governmental regulations, it is becoming more and more complex and, indeed, increasingly more costly to operate.

Running a successful small business requires a tremendous amount of dedication, time and an abundance of skills. A small business owner or manager must have a wide range of entrepreneurial talents, e.g., a knowledge of financing, selling, accounting, bookkeeping, regulatory procedures, safety precautions and be highly skilled in human relations.

The small business person must be able to dream creatively, think enthusiastically and rebound resiliently. Such an individual must be upbeat in mind and heart, even when the physical part of that person says “enough already.”

Strictly speaking, a knowledge of the various business activities alone does not guarantee an owner success. There are other factors involved, such as location, timing, and a determined work ethic. Many small business people are still hard at work, long after the business hours are closed.

Many such persons burn the midnight oil well into the night, and rise long before the sun comes over the eastern horizon. That is just what it takes. I call it “uncompromising perseverance and integrity.” Someone has said, “We don’t appreciate something until it is no longer available.” To the contrary, we do appreciate what we have here in our community.

The bottom line is that, small business operators and workers, indeed the community as a whole, are a resilient and dedicated people. Therein is the life blood of our American dream. And, therein too, is the strength of our own community.

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